World War Ii and Candidates
12 eP e ap . c rs om FOREWORD This booklet contains reports written by Examiners on the work of candidates in certain papers. Its contents are primarily for the information of the subject teachers concerned. 9697 History June 2005 HISTORY GCE Advanced Level and GCE Advanced Subsidiary Level Paper 9697/01 Paper 1 – Modern European History, 1789 – 1939 General comments The general standard of the scripts was satisfactory and all of the Examiners read some excellent work that was relevant, clearly argued and well supported by appropriate knowledge. Most candidates answered four questions as required and used their time effectively. The standard of the answers to Question 1, the Source-based question, was better and Examiners welcomed the improvement.
Fewer candidates only summarised the sources and more gained credit by comparing and contrasting them and by assessing their relative value.
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They considered how reliable and useful the passages were. This could be done in several ways, including testing the reliability of what a source said against one’s own knowledge, testing the reliability of what a source said against what other sources indicated, examining the language and argument in a source to indicate its bias, and analysing a source’s language and argument in relation to the author’s purpose or audience. Sometimes candidates dismissed sources because they were biased.
However, all sources might be biased in one way or another and the task of historians is to see through the bias and extract useful judgements or knowledge. When answering the essay questions (Questions 2 – 8), weaker candidates were usually unable to provide enough knowledge to support their explanations so that their answers tended to be assertions. On the other hand, good answers were able to balance arguments or explanations with accurate knowledge. This knowledge does not have to be detailed but candidates must provide support for their claims. This was particularly apparent in Questions 3 and 5.
In Question 3, there were some acceptable arguments about the general social effects of the Industrial Revolution but the answers could not be given high credit when the claims were not supported by examples. This was the reason why candidates were required to refer to developments in two of Britain, France and Germany. In Question 5, many candidates were able to record accurately a variety of reasons for European imperial expansion but the better answers emerged when they illustrated policies by the use of examples. Less satisfactory answers tended to be vague about specific developments.
A discriminating factor between good and less creditable answers was that the former paid attention to key words or phrases in the questions whereas the more moderate responses sometimes comprised general accounts of topics. The essay questions are given below with the key words or phrases in bold. Teachers might decide that it would be a useful exercise to provide their candidates with exemplar essay questions and discuss which are the key words or phrases that need particular attention in answers. Question 2 Question 3 Question 4 Question 5 How far was Napoleon Bonaparte an oppressive ruler in his domestic policies from 1799 to 1815?
Discuss the claim that the middle classes gained most from the Industrial Revolution in Europe. Explain the growing support for nationalism in Germany and Italy from 1848 to 1871. Why were European governments more willing to support imperialist policies in the later years of the nineteenth century? (You should refer to developments in at least two of Britain, France and Germany in your answer. ) How far had Lenin achieved his aims by the time of his death in 1924? How accurate is the claim that the effects of World War I were the most important reason for the rise of totalitarian governments in Europe during the period to 1939? You should refer to at least two of Germany, Italy and Russia in your answer. ) Examine the claim that Marxism developed to 1914 as the result of industrialisation. Question 6 Question 7 Question 8 2 9697 History June 2005 Comments on specific questions Section A: The Origins of World War I, 1870 – 1914 Question 1 ‘Russia’s policies caused the outbreak of war in 1914’. Use Sources A-D to show how far the evidence confirms this statement. This Source-based question on The Origins of World War I asked candidates to use four Sources to consider whether Russia’s policies caused the outbreak of war in 1914.
Candidates were given credit when they sorted the Sources into groups. Sources C and D confirmed the claim whilst Source B contradicted it. Source A was interpreted by most candidates as contradicting the claim but some candidates noted the strong hint in the last sentence that Russia would stand by Serbia, often interpreting this as a ‘blank cheque’ from Russia that equated with Germany’s ‘blank cheque’ to Austria-Hungary. Many candidates attempted to evaluate the extracts but some answers applied simplistic tests of reliability.
For example, they stated that Source A was reliable because it was a personal telegram from the Tsar to the Kaiser, whilst Sources B, C and D were reliable because they were, in different forms, official documents. The most successful candidates used the internal evidence of what the sources contained to assess their reliability and value. For example, was Source A correct to claim that ‘Germany had used all her influence on Austria-Hungary in order to bring about an understanding with Russia’? Some candidates were given credit when they referred to Germany’s ‘blank cheque’ to deny this claim.
There were creditable contrasts between the effects of German long-term planning and Russian mobilisation. The least successful answers sometimes spent too much time in summarising, or paraphrasing, the extracts. They lacked a conclusion whereas the best answers included a conclusion that provided an overall judgement. Section B Question 2 How far was Napoleon Bonaparte an oppressive ruler in his domestic policies from 1799 to 1815? The question asked candidates to examine how far Napoleon Bonaparte was an oppressive ruler in his domestic policies from 1799 to 1815.
The overall standard of the answers was sound. The most successful candidates examined a range of issues but focused on domestic issues because these were specified in the question. Answers could not be given credit for discussions of foreign policy. Some answers devoted too much time to the rise of Napoleon to 1799. This could be used as a brief introduction but not as a major point in the argument. Credit was given when candidates considered some of the major policies and reforms introduced by Napoleon, such as the Code Napoleon and the Concordat. They also referred to the police system and censorship.
Good answers examined the political structure of Napoleon’s rule; it was highly centralised and authoritarian. Some moderate and weak answers omitted this very important aspect of the question. Question 3 Discuss the claim that the middle classes gained most from the Industrial Revolution in Europe. The question was based on the claim that the middle classes gained most from the Industrial Revolution in Europe. The standard of the answers was variable. The most frequent reason why answers did not gain a high mark was that they devoted too much time to eneral descriptions of the processes of the Industrial Revolution and did not examine sufficiently the effects on social classes. There were some sound answers that explained the profits that were gained by the middle classes from investment in industries. Increasing wealth allowed them to play a more important political role. The same reason gave them advantages in society. The question allowed candidates to compare the middle classes with other social groups. Some weak answers only described the hardships of the lower orders and referred to the middle classes by implication but the better responses included a fuller comparison. 9697 History June 2005 Question 4 Explain the growing support for nationalism in Germany and Italy from 1848 to 1871. The key issue was the growing support for nationalism in Germany and Italy and the specified period was 1848 to 1871. Examiners read some very effective answers that were analytical and considered a variety of relevant points. Some referred to the legacies of the French Revolution and the Vienna Settlement. This was relevant as long as it was not given too much space. The most successful answers were balanced between Germany and Italy whereas some did not merit the highest credit because they were imbalanced.
Some moderate answers wrote narrative accounts of political leaders such as Bismarck and Cavour. This approach was relevant but it sometimes omitted to link these leaders to nationalism. On the other hand, Examiners read some perceptive answers that argued that, whilst Bismarck and Cavour promoted unification, they were not essentially German or Italian nationalists. There were interesting assessments of the effects of the 1848-1849 revolutions and of the Zollverein in Germany. Question 5 Why were European governments more willing to support imperialist policies in the later years of the nineteenth century? You should refer to developments in at least two of Britain, France and Germany in your answer. ) A recurring quality of the best answers was their combination of argument and examples. Many candidates could explain a number of relevant factors that encouraged governments to support imperialist policies but their essays sometimes lacked examples so that the answers were too general for a high mark. The most successful answers combined explanations of factors such as political and economic interests with references to regions where these were implemented. Question 6 How far had Lenin achieved his aims by the time of his death in 1924?
Examiners were pleased with the quality of most of the answers. Credit was given when candidates explained Lenin’s aims explicitly; these were assumed by some of the more moderate responses. The most successful answers considered both his successes and his failures and came to a considered balance of judgement. Answers in the middle and lower bands sometimes focused exclusively on successes. A few candidates devoted too much time to the rise of Lenin and Bolshevism to 1917; this was relevant but needed to be linked to the key issue of Lenin’s achievements by 1924.
Among the successes that were explained was that Lenin took the Bolsheviks to power in 1917. He then led the new government to victory against the Whites in the civil war. The war with Germany was ended. He established a one-party state, defeating opponents, and he was unchallenged personally. On the other hand, possible failures might have included the fact that Lenin’s economic measures, especially War Communism, almost led to collapse and had to be revised in the New Economic Policy. Survival was achieved at the cost of abandoning Marxist-communist principles.
Terror became widely used. Question 7 How accurate is the claim that the effects of World War I were the most important reason for the rise of totalitarian governments in Europe during the period to 1939? (You should refer to at least two of Germany, Italy and Russia in your answer. ) The question asked candidates to consider whether the effects of World War I were the most important reason for the rise of totalitarian governments in Europe. They were required to refer to at least two countries out of Germany, Italy and Russia in their answers.
The general quality of the essays was satisfactory and Examiners read some excellent answers. These assessed the impact of the war and compared it with other factors; their arguments were supported by appropriate knowledge. Good candidates explained that the war had serious political and economic effects. For example, it destabilised an authoritarian regime in Russia and the post-war democratic governments in Germany and Italy because neither state was content with the outcome of the conflict (including Germany and the imposition of the Versailles settlement and Italy’s disillusionment with erritorial issues). Economic consequences were examined. In Germany and Italy, the war led to the growing appeal of ultra-nationalist groups whilst it confirmed communist leaders, Lenin and then Stalin, in power in Russia because the 1917 Revolution was a direct outcome of World War I, although it was not its only cause. With this basis, sound answers explored other factors in the rise of totalitarian governments, such as the personal appeal of leaders and their use both of propaganda and terror to enforce obedience. Democratic governments were weak. 4 9697 History June 2005
Question 8 Examine the claim that Marxism developed to 1914 as the result of industrialisation. The key issue was the connection between Marxism and industrialisation. Candidates gained credit when they explained that Marx believed that there was such a link; he held that capitalist industrial states suppressed the wage earners or proletariat. The middle class or bourgeoisie were said to use industrialisation to exploit the lower classes. Sound answers explained that Marxism appealed most to those in industrial societies, especially in France and Germany.
However, it did have less appeal in highly industrialised Britain. Some noted that Russia, the centre of the first Marxist revolution, was not an industrially-based country. Some weak answers were vague about Marxism and provided only general accounts of industrialisation. These did not deserve a high mark because they did not address the key issue in the question. Paper 9697/03 Paper 3 – International History, 1945 – 1991 General Comments The number of candidates taking this paper was slightly up on last year. The overall standard of the candidates was satisfactory.
Most scripts demonstrated a reasonable level of knowledge and understanding. The paper produced answers which covered the entire range of marks with a pleasing number of candidates producing some high quality answers. An example of a high quality answer has been included below under Question 1. The most successful candidates used their knowledge and understanding of the topic to answer specifically the question on the examination paper. Knowledge was used to support and sustain an analytical argument which came to a specific conclusion.
Many candidates underachieved because they tended to use their knowledge to write narrative and descriptive answers which contained only a limited amount of analysis. Each question on the examination paper focused on one of the topic areas contained within the syllabus. In Question 1, candidates were asked to assess the hypothesis that the UN Secretary-General was the most important factor in ending the Suez Conflict of 1956. The command instruction of ‘how far’ required candidates to offer an analytical answer ‘for’ and ‘against’ the proposition in the question, using source information and contextual knowledge to support their answers.
The essay questions (Questions 2-8) were all framed in a similar way to enable candidates to engage in analysis. Command instructions such as ‘how important’, ‘assess’ and ‘discuss’ require candidates to produce a balanced analysis in direct response to the question. Given the limited time available in the examination, lengthy contextual sections which ‘set the scene’, unfortunately limit the time available for direct coverage of the issue in the question. Although it is useful to plan an answer, candidates should be aware that this exercise should take only a few minutes for each answer.
Very few candidates failed to attempt four questions. However, although a number of candidates failed to finish their final answer, this was presumably due to pressure of time. Comments on specific questions Section A: The Development of the United Nations, 1945 – 1991 Question 1 How far do Sources A-E support the view that the work of Hammarskjold was the most important reason why the Suez conflict was brought to an end in November 1956? The question required candidates to study five sources on the UN and the Suez Crisis of 1956.
They had to consider the view that the UN Secretary-General, Dag Hammarskjold was the most important reason why the Suez Crisis was brought to an end in November 1956. In doing so, candidates should have considered information within each source, cross referenced information between sources and have analysed the attribution of the sources to decide whether or not the hypothesis in the question was correct. 5 9697 History June 2005 The vast majority of candidates were able to use source information to construct an answer which both supported and challenged the hypothesis in the question.
However, although most candidates used information within the sources, fewer were able to cross reference information between sources or evaluate the sources as examples of historical evidence on the issue. In providing source devaluation, many candidates did not go beyond referring to specific sources as ‘biased’ or ‘fairly reliable’, without explaining precisely why this assessment was made. For candidates to receive adequate reward for source evaluation, an explanation of why sources might be ‘biased’ or ‘unreliable’ is required.
Some candidates wrote extensive answers to this question which created time problems in answering the essay questions later in the examination. The following is an answer to this question; although it did not receive full marks, it does illustrate a very high standard of answer. The claim that Hammarskjold was the most important reason why the Suez Conflict came to an end is debateable. Source A supports the hypothesis by almost making it seem that UNEF would not have been possible without him. ‘Hammarskjold found himself acting as much in the diplomatic as in the administrative field. This was because he had to persuade Egypt to be the host country for the UNEF. This source gives one the sense that the Secretary-General was an effective leader in a time of pressure and was willing to take up the challenging role. For instance ‘The Assembly asked the Secretary-General… to produce a plan for a UN force within 48 hours’. Hammarskjold took up the challenge and organised the force. This gives the impression that the UN General Assembly would have been helpless without Hammarskjold’s involvement. This source has been written by a British journalist six years after the end of the conflict.
Although not a key player in the conflict the journalist provides credible evidence as to the role of the Secretary-General. Source B also supports the hypothesis. It looks more at the diplomatic side of the conflict by stating that ‘Hammarskjold…succeeded in establishing a basis for co-operation between the UN and Egypt upon which the UNEF operated smoothly’. The source only focuses on this fact of how Hammarskjold was able to persuade Nasser. This point is also mentioned in Source A. One has also to note the author of the source. Brian Urquhart was a key player concerning the UN presence in the conflict.
As it is explained in source C Urquhart was part of Hammarskjold’s ‘admirable staff’. Therefore, this source provides more effective information because Urquhart was involved in the UN at the time and therefore knew precisely what was happening. The source, in that sense, can be said to be reliable. However, as a member of Hammarskjold’s team it may be likely to support the role of the Secretary-General. This source comes from a biography of Hammarskjold and does not offer any critical comments on the Secretary-General’s role in the Suez Conflict. Therefore, source B may not be wholly reliable as evidence.
Source C partially challenges the hypothesis, unlike the first two sources. It points out that ‘the idea (for the UNEF) came from Lester Pearson’. Therefore, Hammarskjold cannot be said to be the most important reason for the ending of the Suez Conflict. The author of this source concentrates more on the role of the General Assembly. It states, ‘the Suez crisis was… the finest hour of the General Assembly’. The author gives credit to Hammarskjold ‘and his admirable staff’. One can see that Hammarskjold is not praised as he is in Source A and furthermore, this view can be seen in Source D which also partially challenges the hypothesis.
The General Assembly gets more attention when the Security Council would not do anything following the veto by Britain and France. Hammarskjold is shown in a different light compared to sources A and B. Hammarskjold is said to have ‘had serious doubts at first about’ Pearson’s idea. In sources A and B Hammarskjold seems to have jumped at the challenge without having second thoughts. On the other hand, one should take note that the source was written in 1995 and would have had a better overview of what happened. This would explain the playing down of Hammarskjold’s role.
Source C is written by a diplomat and source D is written by a journalist neither of which were key players in the conflict. The sources are both from books which attempt to place the Suez Conflict in wider international context. The sources cannot be said to be wholly reliable but they do offer an objective view. Source E partially supports the hypothesis. Yet, like sources C and D states that there were different key people. The source states ‘the key person, in addition to Hammarskjold himself, was Lester Pearson’. Lester Person is actually labelled as a key erson rather than just being mentioned as the person who came up with the idea of the UNEF. But this source does not play down Hammarskjold’s role and also mentions that he ‘quickly provided a preliminary plan’ about the crisis. This is similar to source A. 6 9697 History June 2005 In conclusion, source A and B fully support the hypothesis while source partially supports it. Sources C and D partially challenge the hypothesis. Sources C, D and E all have the advantage of having a better overview of the Suez Crisis, being written some time after the event.
However, these sources are not written by key players and they cannot be considered wholly reliable. Source A is not written by a key player but was written soon after the event. Source B, on the other hand, is written by a key player but cannot be said to be wholly reliable because one would not expect a person to openly criticise his own organisation. The hypothesis claims that the Suez conflict was brought to an end because of Hammarskjold’s work. Yet, most of the sources have pointed out that other key players, the General Assembly, Pearson and Nasser, also helped to end the conflict.
I would suggest that the hypothesis should be modified to ‘How far do sources A-E support the view that the work of Hammarskjold, in carrying out the idea of Lester Pearson, was an important reason why the Suez conflict was brought to an end in November 1956? ’ Section B Question 2 Which of the following has the best claim to mark the start of the Cold War: Churchill’s Iron Curtain speech, 1946; the Truman Doctrine, 1947; the Berlin Blockade, 1948-1949? Explain your answer. This was by far the most popular of the optional essay questions.
However, some candidates did not differentiate effectively between the ‘cause(s)’ and ‘start’ of the Cold War. In many of these answers a significant amount of time was used to provide detailed contextual material going back to the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. The vast majority of candidates displayed a detailed knowledge of the1945 to 1949 period of the Cold War in Europe. The best answers were able to use this information to answer the question directly. Those candidates who achieved high marks were able to explain directly which of the three developments had the best claim to starting the Cold War.
Knowledge was then deployed to support and sustain the case made. A number of candidates took the view that none of the three incidents constituted the start of the Cold War. The best of these answers were able to explain which of the three developments did not constitute the start of the Cold War as well as pointing out why another incident deserved the title. The Soviet takeover of Eastern Europe, 1945-48 and the Marshall Plan were offered as alternatives to the three developments offered in the question. Question 3 Who or what was responsible for the globalisation of the Cold War?
This was also a very popular question. Many of the better answers were able to give a definition of the term ‘globalisation’. They also made specific reference to the two command instructions in the question, ‘why’ and ‘what’. Most of the candidates were able to mention the Korean War as a possible starting point in the globalisation of the Cold War. Other events such as the Vietnam War, Cuba and the Arab-Israeli conflict were mentioned. Some candidates mentioned the collapse of the European overseas empires in the 1950s and 1960s which resulted in the involvement of the two superpowers.
In determining responsibility, the vast majority of candidates chose either the USA or the USSR or both as the prime culprits in globalising the Cold War. However, a small number of candidates also laid blame on the ambitions of the People’s Republic of China. Question 4 Assess the relative contribution of America and the Soviet Union to the outcome of the war in Vietnam? This was not a popular question. A clear majority of candidates chose Question 3 over Question 4. Many answers adopted a narrative-chronological or narrative description of the Vietnam War.
Very few candidates were able to assess the ‘relative’ contribution of either the USA or the USSR. In many cases, the US contribution was seen in providing troops and leading the conduct of the war from 1965 to 1972. The Soviet contribution was seen in terms of providing military equipment to North Vietnam. Very few candidates were able to link the term ‘relative contribution’ to the ‘outcome’ of the Vietnam War. As a result, diplomatic aspects of the contribution of both the USA and USSR were ignored. 7 9697 History June 2005 Question 5 How important was the West in the collapse of the USSR in 1991?
This proved to be a very popular question. It was clear that the majority of the candidates had a clear understanding of why the USSR collapsed in 1991. Those candidates who underachieved tended to ignore the role of the West and instead, concentrated on the internal factors which resulted in the collapse of the Soviet Union. Most of this type of response mentioned Gorbachev’s attempted reforms (Glasnost and Perestroika) and their subsequent failure. Fewer candidates referred to the impact of nationalism (The Baltic States and the Caucasus region) on the weakening of the USSR.
Only a small number of candidates referred to the events of August 1991 which led directly to the USSR’s collapse. Unfortunately, those candidates who displayed detailed knowledge of internal factors without mentioning the importance of the West, did not score highly. Of those candidates who referred directly to the role of the West, the vast majority referred to the role of the USA. The Second Cold War was regarded as a major destabilising factor for the USSR. The cost of matching the USA in both conventional and nuclear armaments was cited as an important cause of the Soviet Union’s collapse.
A small number of candidates mentioned the broader role of the West. The disparity of lifestyles and wealth which were picked up via TV and radio in East Germany or by radio across the Soviet Bloc were given as examples of this phenomenon. Question 6 How successful were attempts to control the nuclear arms race between the superpowers in the period 1960 to 1980? Examiners noted that the majority of answers to this question adopted a narrative and narrative-chronological approach, with only very limited analysis of the issue of ‘success’, which was mentioned in the question.
The vast majority of answers referred to the Test Ban Treaty of 1963, the Non-Proliferation Treaty of 1968 and the two SALT treaties of the 1970s. Unfortunately, a significant minority of candidates did not limit their coverage to the period ending in 1980. As a result, considerable time was spent describing and explaining the role of START, SDI (The Strategic Defence Initiative or Star Wars) and the INF (Intermediate Nuclear Forces) treaty. Considerable detailed knowledge was displayed on the treaties of the 1960s and 1970s mentioned above.
However, this knowledge was not always used to its full effect. In many cases knowledge was deployed to describe events and the terms of treaties, rather than used to explain the degree to which attempts were successful. Question 7 ‘By the 1980s, the American dominance of the international economy had almost disappeared’. Discuss. Examiners noted that this was not a popular question. Many responses showed only a limited knowledge of the international economy between 1945 and the 1980s. Many candidates accepted the assertion in the question at face value.
They mentioned the rise of West Germany and Japan as potential economic rivals to the USA in the international economy by the 1970s. They also mentioned the rise of the Asian Tiger economies in a similar vein. Some candidates mentioned the collapse of the Bretton Woods system by 1972, with the abandonment of the Fixed Exchange Rate system. However, only a few candidates offered a balanced approach which mentioned that although the USA’s overwhelmingly dominant position in the international economy after the Second World War had been eroded, it had not disappeared.
US dominance in I. T. related industries as shown by the NASDAQ index of companies (e. g. Microsoft, Hewlett Packard, Apple etc. ), and its dominant role at the WTO and with the World Bank, were cited as examples of continued dominance. 8 9697 History June 2005 Question 8 Why did Africa experience serious problems of famine in the 1980s? Although not a popular question it, nevertheless, produced some very good quality answers. It was clear that some Centres had taught this topic extremely well.
Candidates were able to mention social, climatic, political and economic factors which resulted in large areas of Africa experiencing famine in the 1980s. The best answers gave specific examples of the areas of famine. The most regularly mentioned were Ethiopia and Somalia. However, in several cases candidates interpreted the question somewhat differently. Many candidates displayed sound knowledge of Africa in the 1980s but used this knowledge to explain why Africa was relatively poor compared to the rest of the world, rather than the specific issue of famine.
Paper 9697/05 Paper 5 – History of USA c. 1840 – 1968 General comments There was a considerable increase in the number of candidates compared with June 2004. The overall standard was sound, but certain common weaknesses were evident, resulting in lower outcomes. The most common was failing to answer four questions, or alternatively only offering a few lines as answers. There were also a number of completely irrelevant answers which scored Band 7 (0-7 marks).
However, the best scripts were a pleasure to read, being consistently relevant, well structured, analytical or explanatory, with good supporting evidence appropriately used. These scored Bands 1 and 2 (18-25 marks). One script even attained the exceptionally high mark of 96. The compulsory source based question, Question 1, was answered indifferently. To simply repeat and recycle the words of the sources with a few general remarks at the beginning and/or end of the response could at best only result in Level 3 (10-14 marks), and this is what most candidates did.
To achieve the higher bands it was essential to use the sources as evidence, i. e. to interpret and evaluate them in their historical context. The most common failings in the essay questions (2-8) were over reliance on narrative and descriptive responses and a reluctance to engage in relevant analysis of the problems posed in the questions, backed up by good evidence in a coherent structure. Comments on specific questions Section A: The Road to Secession and Civil War, 1846-61 Question 1 ‘It was the complete breakdown in trust between North and South that made compromise impossible. Using Sources A – E, discuss how far the evidence supports this assertion. Only a minority of candidates evaluated the sources as evidence in their historical context, but those who did scored higher marks in Levels 5-6 (19-25 marks). A common failing was to put the case for or against the contention, whereas it is important to show the evidence for and against it and then to come to a conclusion as to which, in the candidate’s view, is better or more reliable.
Few candidates noted that the sources came into three groups, A being two years before Lincoln’s election in November 1860, B and C being an immediate reaction to his victory and D and E, after the secession of the lower south had occurred. Few candidates pointed out that Douglas was a Presidential candidate in 1860 and only some explained what his doctrine of Popular Sovereignty involved and how it had proved unworkable in Kansas. Most candidates saw the significance of Stephens being later Vice President of the Confederacy, but few gave evidence of his strong pro-Union views until his home state of Georgia seceded.
The best approach was for candidates to give the evidence for the contention; this would be Sources B, D and E in their historical context and then to give the evidence against the contention; this would be Sources A and C in their historical context. Finally, the candidate should state his or her conclusion, or at the highest level, why sources point to a different hypothesis to that stated in the question, or alternatively, why the hypothesis should be modified in the light of the evidence. 9 9697 History June 2005 Section B Question 2 ‘Mexico will poison us. United States? How accurate was this prediction of the effects of the Mexican War on the This was a very popular question with the great majority of candidates answering it. A significant number simply ignored Whitman’s quotation and gave a descriptive account of the origins and course of the war. The majority of candidates went beyond this to point out that as a consequence of the huge annexation of territory the slavery question flared up violently with sectional tensions getting steadily worse and leading to secession and civil war.
The best responses went beyond this to point out that the ultimate result was not only a transcontinental nation from Pacific to Atlantic but that the Union victory led to the elimination of the Southern veto in the Senate and that America became the most aggressively capitalist and individualist nation in the world. It could be argued that the modern American nation took shape as a result of the territorial annexations from Mexico. Question 3 ‘I claim not to have controlled events but confess plainly that events have controlled me. ’ (Abraham Lincoln, speech in 1864). Do you agree with Lincoln’s assessment of his Presidency?
A very popular question but few really good responses; most candidates played it safe by giving a descriptive account of Lincoln’s Presidency, in some cases going back long before he became President. The point of the question was not that Lincoln simply reacted to events but that many of the key events facing him were beyond his control. Obvious examples would be the acute sectional crisis of the 1850s, the whole slavery issue and the decision of the Lower South to secede and form the C. S. A. Relatively few pointed out that Lincoln was decisive and active when needed.
Good examples would be his skill in keeping Kentucky and Maryland from seceding, the Emancipation Proclamation, his flat refusal to negotiate terms with the Confederacy when this appeared to be the only way to end the war, as in the early half of 1864. He also assumed to himself almost dictatorial powers in suspending, in effect, the Bill of Rights, introducing censorship and suspending Habeas Corpus. He also appointed and retained Grant amid much criticism and towards the end of his Presidency had a Reconstruction programme which, if implemented, might have reconciled the defeated South.
Question 4 Explain why the United States became the world’s leading industrial nation in the period 1865-1900. A minority choice but reasonably well answered. The role of technological inventions was well handled and nearly all candidates discussed the endless supply of cheap and motivated labour by immigration. Relatively few mentioned cheap land or the fact that the US had a political and legal framework in this period which was extremely favourable to business and hostile to any degree of government in economic matters, with the partial exception of the railroads.
There was an almost total lack of data – for example, that by 1900 the US produced 30% of the world’s industrial goods. 10 9697 History June 2005 Question 5 How was it possible, in spite of constitutional protection, for the Southern States to deny basic civil rights to African-Americans from 1895 to 1964? A very popular question, though not very well handled, with little discussion of the roles of Presidents Kennedy and Johnson in granting full civil rights. In theory the thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth Amendments had granted full legal and civic equality to the Freedmen.
The basic problem, which few candidates mentioned, was that the whites had lost interest in the fate of the African-Americans; the latter were a small minority in the nation and even in the former slave states they were a majority in only two states in 1900. As a result, the southern states were able by a variety of means, which were quite well described, to circumvent the plain intention of the Amendments by reducing blacks to the status of permanently second class citizens, denied the right to vote and access to the same level of education as the white majority.
Most candidates mentioned the effect of the Supreme Court decision in Plessy v Ferguson. The role of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s was probably overstated and few mentioned FDR’s juggling act in keeping the Solid South as part of his victorious coalition, while successfully wooing Northern blacks into voting for him. Most Presidents in this period were indifferent to black aspirations. Candidates correctly dwelt on Martin Luther King’s inspiring and intelligent leadership in the civil disobedience campaign from the 1950s onwards.
Few mentioned his building up of alliances with Democratic politicians in the North, in particular Kennedy. The effect of the Brown case was dealt with well and better responses highlighted the effect of the Cold War on putting pressure on the American political establishment to grant civil rights. None pointed to the irony of the Texan career politician Lyndon Johnson pushing through the major civil rights legislation when his more high minded predecessors had been unable, or unwilling, to do so. Question 6 How different were the policies adopted by Hoover and Roosevelt to deal with the Great Depression?
A popular question but candidates paid little attention to Hoover. Unlike Roosevelt, Hoover believed firmly that it was quite wrong for the Federal Government to engage in the regulation of, and interference in, the economy. No one mentioned that Hoover tried very hard to commit FDR to a continuation of his own policies even up to the day before FDR’s Inauguration in March 1933. Hoover was, of course, regarded as one of the great humanitarians of the twentieth century for his outstanding work in famine relief in Russia in 1919 and 1920 and it is quite wrong to portray him as indifferent to suffering.
His policies were, however, ineffective and from 1929 to 1933 unemployment, business failures and falling stock market prices grew steadily worse until it seemed that the whole financial system of the US was on the very edge of total collapse. While candidates were correct to portray FDR as both different from and more effective than Hoover, few made much sense of the famous New Deal. It was not a coherent, logical programme and at times it was not easy to see precisely what FDR was trying to do; this was not helped by his persistent deviousness.
However, he managed to infuse all around him with his unfailing cheerfulness and optimism (in contrast to Hoover) and he was clearly an activist ready to try any policy, however unorthodox, to beat the slump. As a result the popular mood shifted and disaster was averted. Some candidates correctly pointed out that unemployment figures were still very high up to 1939. Question 7 ‘Gradually and rather reluctantly, the United States became an imperial power and a military presence on a global scale. ’ Is this a fair assessment of American foreign policy, 1890-1919?
This question required skill in organisation as it covered two wars, but most candidates relied on a descriptive, rather than an analytical answer, and as a result the treatment of the 1914 to 1919 period was frequently hurried with, too often, the Versailles Peace Conference being ignored. Few were prepared to tackle the assertion contained in the question. The war with Spain was brutal and pitiless, resulting in de facto control of Puerto Rico, the Philippines, and in effect Cuba. There was certainly nothing accidental or hesitant about it. It did make the US a global, and in effect, imperial power.
No candidate mentioned Theodore Roosevelt’s successful mediation in the Russo-Japanese war which resulted ironically in the Nobel Peace prize being awarded to one of the most aggressive and warlike US Presidents. Many candidates discussed Roosevelt’s acquisition of the Panama Canal and the creation of both the US Canal Zone, with sovereign powers, and the creation of the state of Panama being hived off from Columbia. The first World War was handled better, with most candidates being correct in describing President Wilson’s determination to stay out of conflict.
It is arguable that the US was slowly dragged into conflict once Russia had withdrawn in 1917, leading to the strong likelihood of German victory which financial considerations, among other factors, made unacceptable to the US. No candidate mentioned the famous Zimmerman telegram and its effect on US public opinion. In 1918 and 1919 Wilson seemed to develop illusions of grandeur in attempting to force his own internationalist ideals on reluctant Allies. 11 9697 History June 2005 Question 8 How far was increasing national prosperity from 1945 to 1968 shared by all Americans?
Very few candidates answered this question and none did particularly well. The main focus of responses was on the exceptions to the national prosperity, usually African-Americans, but the other pockets of poverty such as the rural poor, declining mining areas and Hispanic migrant workers, were usually ignored. One would have preferred to have seen much more discussion on why and how Americans became so prosperous in the post war period. Alone among major powers, it gained enormously in wealth from the war and dominated the world economic scene during the whole period.
The US was a major beneficiary of the long economic boom from post war reconstruction and the huge armaments industry benefited greatly from the Korean War and the Cold War with the Soviet Union. These factors were ignored. Paper 9697/06 Paper 6 – Caribbean History, 1794 – 1900 General comments In the main candidates attempted the required four questions, although there were a few who obviously spent too much time on Question 1 and either could not finish a fourth question or, in some cases, had failed to tackle a fourth question.
As far as possible, candidates should give equal shares of the time available to each question as a truncated or missing final answer will affect the examination result. Among the ways of avoiding the most serious consequences of failing to complete four full answers would be to plan responses to the questions so that, if need be, a firm outline of an answer could be given when time is running out, rather than writing two or three paragraphs which only represent a fraction of the material a candidate may have available.
Question 1 was always answered. Many candidates were able to consider critically the material in the sources and the reasons why they were written. Some answers only made use of the sources for their content and at face value. A number of candidates did not write a conclusion to their response and so failed to link what they had written to the statement in the hypothesis. Of the other questions, Question 4 was the most commonly answered followed by Questions 3, 2, 6 and 5 in the order of frequency.
Though many candidates did use examples for their answers from across the whole Caribbean area, some answers were written in very general terms and, often, with the experience of the British Caribbean (or Jamaica only) in mind. Question 4 was an example of this, but answers to other questions sometimes had a similar appearance. In Question 2, abolition in the British colonies often took up more than half of an answer which should have given prominence to French and Spanish experiences too. Detailed comments on the answers to all the questions follow later in the report.
There were some examples of candidates embarking upon answering questions without sufficient thought or planning. Examples included Question 2, in which there were long accounts of how the slave trade in the British Empire was ended, which might have provided a single point about abolition but where a page and a half of detail represented a wasted opportunity to deal with the question more directly. Candidates probably needed to take some time to collect their ideas about Question 5 and to plan to cover both societies and economies. In general, scripts were well presented, though some candidates’ handwriting was difficult to read.
A few candidates failed to arrange their scripts in proper page order and some did not number their questions. 12 9697 History June 2005 Comments on specific questions Section A: Emancipation and its Consequences Question 1 ‘As the nineteenth century progressed, it became clear that there was no future for the Caribbean sugar industry’. How far does the evidence of Sources A-E support this statement? The Level description for candidates to receive at least two-thirds of marks is that a candidate ‘by interpreting/evaluating sources in context finds evidence to challenge and support the hypothesis’. Evidence is a key word.
Candidates should use all the sources, use them as more than a source of information and relate them to the hypothesis in order to gain a high mark. Responses to this question varied widely. Many considered at least some of the sources critically. Some answers were unnecessarily long. Sources A and B described the introduction of machinery to the processing of the cane and gave a hopeful impression of the future of parts of the sugar industry in the early 1850s. Candidates raised questions about the possible attitude of the Governor of British Guiana in Source A and possible journalistic and pro-planter bias in Source B.
Other points about the wide time scale of the sources and their limited geographical scope were made in order to assess the sources. Many missed the chance to use Source D (about the problems of the sugar industry in the British Caribbean, 1876-77) and Source E (on Cuban sugar production in the 1890s) to compare the seemingly dire situation in one part of the area at one time (Source D), with a more buoyant one a little later (Source E). In Cuba, sugar production recovered rapidly after the disasters of war, presumably because of the underlying strengths of the industry there.
In addition, both could be related to the hypothesis and used to suggest that the situation of sugar production was not hopeless in every area and also to question whether Source D really indicated that there was no future for British West Indian sugar. Both Sources C and E were occasionally misunderstood when candidates did not read the extracts through to the end. Many candidates seemed to assume that each of the sources would be directly for or against the hypothesis where, in fact, it could be suggested that none is as clear cut as that.
Section B Question 2 Discuss the factors which account for the abolition of slavery in British, French and Spanish colonies in the Caribbean. A strong point about many answers was that a number of factors, humanitarian activity, resistance of the enslaved, political and economic circumstances, were outlined in the introduction. These themes were then continued through the essays with comparisons of all three sets of experiences together or sometimes with British and French situations compared, followed by a section on Spain. The dominant element was often material about British colonies.
Individual factors sometimes were sketched in and there were examples where description replaced the discussion and weighting of the various factors. Treatment of economic and political factors was often slight in comparison with humanitarian activities and slave resistance. Dealing with France, only Victor Schoelcher’s influence tended to attract much attention and some candidates wrote little about Spain. Less successful answers took each country’s experiences separately and sometimes went back into the eighteenth century anti-slave trade movement in Britain in great detail.
This led to over long essays which failed to deal adequately with the question. Question 3 Compare apprenticeship in the British Caribbean with the patronato in Cuba and assess their respective results. The comparison element in this question was usually well done and many candidates were well informed on the Spanish experience. Normally there was a reasonable attempt to compare the two schemes in terms of planter control, punishments, wages, manumission and judicial supervision. The premature ending of each was explained and many candidates judged the Spanish experience to be more humane and more successful than the British.
There was a minority of candidates who gave great detail on the emancipation legislation but did not look at the working of the systems in much detail. 13 9697 History June 2005 Question 4 Assess the reasons why freed people left the estates where they had been slaves. This was the most widely attempted question in Section B. There was a tendency for candidates to present a series of possible explanations without any assessment or illustration to show the complexity of the situation or the time scale involved.
In general, answers were restricted to the British Caribbean and mostly attempted to cover the push and pull factors. The most successful answers reflected an awareness of the debate among historians about the reasons why freed people left the estates, emphasising opportunities which freed people saw and exploited. Only a few answers dealt only with the rejection of plantation life and the consequent ‘flight from the plantations’. Some candidates used the development of the peasantry to 1860 as an illustration.
Others made good use of the theme that emancipation widened the expectations of freed people. Question 5 To what extent were societies and economies of Caribbean colonies affected by emancipation up to 1900? Explain your answer. Many answers concentrated on economic change and did not reach the date 1900. Some largely reproduced material which was appropriate to Question 4. More effectively, a large number of answers concentrated on the creation of the peasantry and its social and economic results, including the impact on plantation labour and the knock on effect of immigration schemes.
Some candidates wrote about the diversification of crops and the export trade, using Jamaica as an example. Also mentioned were issues about the quality of life (family and education) and social development (village communities and financial cooperatives). Developments in education and health care were mentioned in some essays. There were some sound and well organised answers. Question 6 How far was there a labour crisis in the Caribbean sugar industry in the second half of the nineteenth century? This was a good question for those who were prepared to plan the answer on the extent of the crisis.
Very few candidates did this. Most candidates discussed labour problems in general and the introduction of immigrant labour. Reference to a labour crisis was either non-existent or very brief, possibly a statement that from the landowners’ point of view, there was no longer an adequate or dependable labour force or, with reference to Trinidad and British Guiana, that even in the slave period there was an insufficient supply of labour. Because of the tendency to deal with the ‘labour issue’ rather than the ‘labour crisis’, most answers lacked emphasis in relation to the question.
One plan could have been to deal with: • • • the idea of a crisis, ‘a crisis for whom’ areas of ‘crisis’ where there was no crisis (Cuba, Barbados). Question 7 How significant was discrimination based on gender in Caribbean societies after emancipation? Explain your answer. Answers tended to centre on examples of male dominance, though in any one answer few were mentioned. The main point made in relation to the ‘How significant’ element in the question was that gender discrimination was one among a number of forms of discrimination in Caribbean societies.
Most answers were short and limited in scope. Question 8 Explain how Haiti achieved and consolidated its independence. This question was based on the final section (VII) of the syllabus. Unfortunately, most candidates who attempted to answer it used material which was appropriate to the first two content sections. In consequence, few of the answers covered independence or the period which followed. Many answers dealt only with Toussaint, or even with earlier